Friday, 25 January 2013
Chorizo Stuffed Aubergine - making a little go a long way
The beginning of this year was a bit odd, really. Last year Paul was working in Aberdeen, flying up on a Monday, coming home on a Friday. Then, seemingly at the last minute before he went back to Aberdeen for the first time in the New Year, he was put on a different project. In Derbyshire. Which isn't as far as Aberdeen but still not a daily commute. But we knew it was only going to be temporary because he was waiting for the planets to be aligned for work in Birmingham (my understanding of British geography is greatly improved by him working away).
As it happened, that conjunction of the planets happened again quite suddenly - he called on a Thursday afternoon to say that he was going to be home that night, ahead of starting in Birmingham on the Friday. Which was lovely and everything, but very inconvenient, because I had only planned a solo dinner and it was going to be a nice one.
You see, I had an aubergine and a single, 70g piece of cooking chorizo. My plan was to stuff the chorizo into the aubergine and bake it, letting the lovely brick red oil baste the aubergine from the inside. And half an aubergine really is not a meal.
I couldn't let go of my original plan, because it was a bloody good one. I peeled the skin from the chorizo, cut it into 6 portions and stuffed the portions into slits in the flesh of the aubergine (being careful not to cut into the skin). I also cut another, horizontal slit in the aubergine to encourage the chorizo oil to flow through. Then I sprinkled it with a bit of extra olive oil and baked it in a medium oven for about 45 minutes, until it was very obviously cooked all the way through. Undercooked aubergine is horrible. Properly cooked aubergine is heavenly.
Then, to make it a more substantial meal, I served it with some pasta aglio olio e pepperoncino (garlic, oil and chilli). In addition to fresh garlic and chilli, I used a sprinkling of pil pil mix (dried paprika, garlic, parsley and chilli), so the slight hint of paprika in the pasta echoed the paprika in the chorizo.
I'm really looking forward to summer, because these aubergines would be so good cooked on the barbecue. I won't even mind having to share them.